Hornets trade Brown for draft pick

Updated: January 25, 2010, 10:08 PM ET
By Marc Stein | ESPN.com

The New Orleans Hornets have lined up the last move they need to make to get under the NBA's luxury-tax threshold.

NBA front-office sources told ESPN.com that the Hornets have reached a verbal agreement on a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers that will send reserve guard Bobby Brown to the Clippers for a conditional future second-round draft pick.

A trade call with the league office to formally approve the deal is scheduled for Tuesday morning, sources said.

The Hornets were roughly $425,000 over the league's $69.9 million tax threshold after Monday's deal with Chicago that sent guard Devin Brown to the Bulls for big man Aaron Gray.

Moving Brown's $736,420 salary gets New Orleans comfortably under the tax line, which will put the Hornets in line to receive a rebate approaching $5 million that is paid out to all non-tax teams during the summer.

The Hornets have made a series of tax-motivated trades to shed salary since last season, starting with the deal that sent Rasual Butler to the Clippers for a second-round pick in 2016. Hilton Armstrong was also dealt to Sacramento earlier this month for a 2016 second-rounder.

The Clippers, meanwhile, have capitalized on the Hornets' luxury-tax issues to fill another need in their rotation. Brown could compete for backup minutes at both point guard and shooting guard. The Clippers lost Sebastian Telfair for four to six weeks with a groin injury and Eric Gordon is dealing with a foot injury.

The trade would be a homecoming for Brown, who starred at L.A.'s Westchester High School and played collegiately at nearby Cal State Fullerton.

Marc Stein is a senior NBA writer for ESPN.com.

Marc Stein | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com
• Senior NBA writer for ESPN.com
• Began covering the NBA in 1993-94
• Also covered soccer, tennis and the Olympics

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